Three Poems
by Heather Christle


for Arda Collins

What they are trying to tell you
is you are wearing the wrong bra
for your shape and situation
This might not even be your life
and in the midst of my thinking
to tell you this a fruit fly
has begun to trail me through the house
as if I were its mother or as if
it were the other way around
and it always is and the house
is on fire at some point
in the simultaneity and I am leaving it
to buy all the things I do
and do not devour



Reading is basically impossible
because of the song in my head
and the nails I have
painted bright yellow
and I would rather
be thinking of sex
with various people I know
and the Joy Division in my head
and the shape of the words
in the book is an image
and nothing more
and my cat
who is circling my body
at high volume
and turning the page
something in me
sees a nail and thinks
oh no this is poison
and a cloud sinks
the light from the room
and in any case I do not
care for literature
unless it leads to you
embracing me
with urgency
You throw
my book down
Dance dance dance
dance dance to the radio
You can hardly believe
I have ever been clothed



And this my sunny intrusion
into the fear my friend has

that the world will not end
She should not worry

so much and I should not
berate myself in the shower

I have to stop saying sorry
to the wet and sparkling air

Here is an end to this plant
and here an end to the sea

Every day I let my body out
this far and no further—

slight trespass for which
there is no fine

You’re fine I tell the friend
It’s almost over

where it is the world
we’re still in

Whole skies of clouds
have departed

without leaving
so much as a word

Here is what the world
will put an end to

Here’s what anyone
would love away



Heather Christle is the author of What Is AmazingThe Difficult Farm, and The Trees The Trees, which won the 2012 Believer Poetry Award. She lives in Northampton, Massachusetts, is the web editor of jubilat, and posts things at


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by Heather Christle

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